Skip to main content
Hort Innovation News and events Media Releases Strategic pivots help citrus succeed overseas in 2020

Strategic pivots help citrus succeed overseas in 2020

Publication date: 18 December 2020

This year, the Australian citrus season has shown great success in key Asian export markets with an increase in value from the previous season seen in Japan and Vietnam. The 2020 Taste Australia Citrus campaign worked to drive sales of Australian citrus in Asian markets by positioning Australian citrus products as the best choice in the market.

Japan was a key market with Australia exporting 50,175 tonnes of citrus produce valued at A$92.7m, a 38 per cent increase in value from the previous season. Vietnam also saw strong trade with 8,566 tonnes exported and valued at A$18.6m, reflecting a 44 per cent increase in value from last season.

Hort Innovation General Manager Marketing and Trade Justine Coates said, “The 2020 Taste Australia Citrus campaign has played its part in the success and continuation of citrus exports to key Asian markets.”

As the campaign launched during the COVID-19 global outbreak, all markets were impacted in some way. A review of the campaign was undertaken to ensure that the planned activities were appropriate to the evolving consumer landscape.

As Japan and the Philippines went through waves of COVID-19 induced lockdown, the retail landscape changed dramatically. Shoppers were limited in stores and footfall dropped, with many consumers turning online for grocery shopping. In response to these changes, activity was adapted to invest more heavily in e-commerce and digital promotion, with a focus on social media, influencers, and digital advertising to reach consumers in their homes.

The 2020 Taste Australia Citrus campaign involved a range of promotional activities to China, Japan, Vietnam, and the Philippines, including:

  • Retail in-store activity (sampling, point of sale materials and display competitions)
  • E-commerce
  • Digital and out–of–home advertising
  • Livestreaming
  • Public relations
  • Use of influencers
  • Use of Key Opinion Leaders (KOLs), and
  • Social media.

“The citrus season success was underpinned by the production of high-quality produce and the hard work of the industry, as well as the adaption of the Taste Australia citrus campaign from the traditional in-store marketing activities to digital and online modes” said Coates.

Citrus Australia CEO, Nathan Hancock said, “In a difficult year our growers and marketers tapped into the pandemic driven demand for citrus by reaching health conscious consumers. Our growers worked hard to provide high quality produce despite the challenges, and I look forward to seeing continued growth next year.”